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Everything posted by Durangokid

  1. A lot have already mentioned the Intruder. I built the A version and it went together very well. The only thing really lacking is the cockpit but it doesn't look too bad once it's all built up. I also like the TBM Avenger, it fits together nicely but it was attacked by the rivet monster... Bryan
  2. That has got to be one of the best natural metal finishes I have seen. Really amazing! Bryan
  3. Always nice to see your finished builds and this one does not disappoint! Everything has to be perfect to pull of that gloss black scheme but you nailed it. Great WIP too... Bryan
  4. Seriously? Wow, that sounds crazy to me. Imagine what it would cost for my Dodge Ram truck... Bryan
  5. Helluva Job and a great cause! She really looks fantastic! Bryan
  6. Hey Brian, I used 6000 grit but it was well used before I sanded the decals. I couldn't sand the yellow decals on the bottom because the ink would spread instead of fade. The good thing is the yellow part of the decals were very fine and not overly bright.
  7. I used 50/50 with leveling thinner and it worked perfectly and I think you psi is good too. Kev and Chuck are your best sources for X-22. I used it for the first time a short time ago and it will be my go to gloss from now on... Bryan
  8. I like it! Great job weathering the natural metal too. How was the fit? Bryan
  9. I think the decals look really good. You would have to see them side by side with photos of the real aircraft to notice a difference. On a side note, have you ever thought of getting a cutter to recreate the decals? Either way, it looks fantastic! I'm always going through your threads to see what kind of ideas I can learn from you. Bryan
  10. Good stuff Kev, I'm really glad you passed that one around. I had been using MRP clear gloss with pretty good results but it seemed to take a lot of coats to get really glossy. X-22 didn't take nearly as much and it is incredibly glossy. I did end up sealing the decals with MRP semigloss and there were no issues with the hotter paint on top of it. I would have used X-22 to seal them but I like to use semigloss for the oil weathering plus I'm running a bit low on the X-22. Funny thing is, I've had that X-22 sealed in the bottle for over 10 years and it was still like new.
  11. I'm really looking forward to this! I've been wanting to to build this kit with those exact decals for a long time now. The only thing that has stopped me is knowing how much work I would have to put in, so I have to be in the right frame of mind to start a project like this. Plus with my luck, Tamiya will release a new mold kit when I'm about half way through! Great work so far and I can't wait to see more! Bryan
  12. So after hearing Chuck and a lot of other modelers talking about Tamiya's X-22 gloss if figured I would give it a try and it's fantastic. I think it's the best I have tried for sure. I used Mr. Color leveling thinner to thin it and I think getting the 50/50 mix correct is important. I thinned it a bit much when painting the bottom which didn't turn out as glossy as the top. I ended up respraying the bottom with the correct mix and all was well. I also have the F-4 stencils from both AOA Decals and Cam. AOA's decals are by far the most detailed set I have seen on any aircraft. In fact, it's daunting with the amount of stencil required for F-4J. The F-4 had several different ejection seat triangles stencils and the Cam set had the ones that were on my aircraft. I used those and the 'danger' part of the intake decal. It took me a week working a few hours at a time to get this thing stenciled up. My only complaint, and it's a minor one, is that every single stencil marking is a separate decal. There are as much as 7 separate stencil decals on one square inch of the model which added to the time consuming process. Time consuming or not, these are just amazing and a must have if you are doing a F-4B or J. Thanks for making these AOA! I only have a few old photos of the aircraft I'm building and some of them show a fairly weathered bird. I think because this was on a ship really dirtied it up a bit more than what I saw with other Vietnam era F-4's. Because of that, I'm assuming a lot of the stencils were wore down although it seemed they were still visible on a lot of weathered aircraft. I decided I would use all the stencils provided but sanded them down to give it the worn look. It tool a lot of time to do since you have to go slow and use a soft grit sandpaper so as not to rip them down completely. I think it came out ok for the most part. I think this angle give you an idea of how smooth and glossy the X-22 is. Some wing stencils before sanding. P.S. You will notice that there is a crack where the intake meets the airframe . Apparently I didn't get enough superglue there so I had to fix that. Always gotta be something! After sanding, what do you guys think? The kit decals were terrible, it was like trying to decal with wax paper they were so thick and would't go down. Even after spraying them with decal sealer they still broke apart a bit. The canopy decals for the names were even worse. Luckily I was able to save it since this was all I had. Sorry for the crappy photos guys and I totally forgot to take pics of the bottom. My good camera is down and this thing is so big it's hard to photograph. I forgot to mention that I painted the intake leading edges aluminum. The instructions say red but it looked like metal to me in the limited photos I have, most of which are black and white. I could be totally wrong on this one. Some of you with a keen eye would notice I changed the tail number from 01 to 02. I was originally going to build 01 but I got confused when I drew the masks and it was a lot easier to change the tail number rather than repaint all the others. Brandon Wood actually caught that little detail! The original 01 aircraft was shot down by a sam missile after it shot down two enemy migs. The pilots had borrowed aircraft 01 so the kill markings were applied to their aircraft 02. Does anyone know if the kill markings were applied while they were deployed or when they returned stateside? Seems I remember reading they were applied while deployed but I can't find the source again. Thanks for stopping by fellas... Bryan
  13. I've lightly sanded decals and the key part is 'lightly'. I used 8000 grit and it's a slow process but if you use a stronger grit, it's likely to have a ripping affect. Some decals are printed over white. So if you have a red decal that was printed over white, you will see the white part as you sand away the red part. Hope that make sense... Bryan
  14. Great work! I love the F-16 and you really did a good job capturing that weathered look of the Greek bird. Bryan
  15. Thanks for all the great comments everyone! I haven't been able to take very good photo since my good camera is having problems, at least my phone camera is decent. I may have said this already but I'm using tamiya masking sheets to make the masks. I don't know if that is the best medium since I have yet to try vinyl. I think the tamyia type tape is better for sharp curves and seals the edges really well, in fact, I haven't had a bit of edge bleed. The biggest issue I had is placing the mask itself. You have to get it perfect the first time because you won't be able to lift it and reset it. I had to re-cut a few mask because I didn't place it where I wanted it. I don't know if vinyl has the same problem, maybe some of they guys more familiar with vinyl can comment. Anyway on the to build photos. I masked and painted the metal areas. I've never done this before so I did a lot of research and did some experimenting of my own. It went like this: - Overall first coat of Alclad Aluminum. - A few panels with Alclad Dark Aluminum. - Some more panels with MRP Anodizes Aluminum - Some lower panels with MRP Exhaust Metal - AK Pale Burnt Metal mostly on the rear areas - Spot painted areas with AK Metal Smoke - Mr. Color Smoke I tried to do some panels with chipping fluid but it didn't work out so well. The metal paint over the chipping fluid chipped so easily that it almost all rubbed off. I ended up using 8000 grit sandpaper to give it the used look. It didn't come out like I planned but I think it good enough to move on. Let me know what you guys think... I still have a few areas to touch up but I'm calling the metals areas done for the most part. P.S. The tail isn't glued on, it just there for the photo Bryan
  16. You can't go wrong with the Silent Air compressors if you have to money. I've had my 20A for over 12 years and it is still going strong not to mention it's as quiet as my fridge. I've never had oil in my air line but it does require some basic maintenance. The oil needs to be changed from time to time and there is a valve on the bottom of mine that needs to be drained about once a year. It gets moisture and oil in the tank that settles to the bottom. As long as you maintain it properly, it will last for years. My buddy has a Co2 tank and he really likes it but I'm not sure what your management would think if they saw you dragging that scary looking tank into you apartment. I think you will be happy with you decision. Bryan
  17. So I'm finally back to work on my Phantom. The kit decals were trashed as were the Yellow Hammer decals I had. The kit decals completely yellowed but I was able to bleach them out for the most part by setting them in direct sunlight for a few days. I tested a decal only to have it break apart in water so I sprayed some testers decal bonder which helped but wasn't perfect. They Yellow Hammer decals were even worse and they weren't all that accurate to boot. My only other option was to use my trusty Silhouette to cut some masks. Thankfully AOA has a new set of stencils so I'm all set. I drew all the markings, including the walkways, with Inkscape. It took some time but was worth it in the end. First I painted the white areas: Then masks for the green strips and clovers: Note: I must have broke that damn probe five time now! Painted custom green color: Masked the stripes: Painted the main color: I used Mr. Color but for this but it seems too light. Removed masks...OOPS! Added tail markings The walkways were next. The black outline was a PIA! I painted and masked the grey areas: I also drew the stars and bars from scratch. These took some work but I figured it would be easier to do these before painting the main color. I first painted the blue areas. Then applied the masks for the white and red areas: Here she is after painting and removing masks: Still a few more to go. You can see just how detailed the Silhouette can cut once you have all the settings dialed in: Here she is with all the markings, not on decal used... Time for some blending and a bit more weathering... Thanks for looking! Bryan
  18. Wow! Look fantastic! I really like the way you did the aluminum areas, it totally looks realistic. Bryan
  19. I finally gave Tamiya's X-22 a try after hearing how nice it is from Chuck and other modelers. I wish I had tried it sooner as it fantastic and I think the best gloss coat I ever used. My only question is can I use a lacquer base flat coat over it? I normally use MRP's flat coat but I'm a bit worried it may react to the X-22. Does anyone have any experience with this? Thanks! Bryan
  20. I've been using Mr. Color lacquer paints for years and love them along with the leveling thinner. I use MRP on occasion now but I still stick with Mr. Color for most needs. I can't add anything that everyone else already told you. I also really like their buffing metalizers, especially iron. They look terrible when you first spray them but buffing them up after it dries, really gives a metal appearance. One other thing I like about them is I have paints that are at least 12 years old and they still work perfectly fine. Some have even dried up but leveling thinner brings them right back. I think you will like them Bryan
  21. Nice build and the tanks look really nice the way you painted it. What kind of masks are those? Bryan
  22. This is the best kit by far if you are doing the single seat 'A' version. I've built a few of the Academy Hornets and they need a bit of work but they look fantastic when done. This is the best kit if you are doing a dual seat bird. Kinetic just reboxed the Academy kit to include both the single and dual seat versions. For this kit you will need a conversion for the earlier 'B' model. Black Box makes makes a good conversion that you can find on ebay from time to time. Other things to think about: It would be a good idea to buy G-Factor landing gear since the kit gear can sag if you don't glue them just right. They are pricey but they look incredible. Rhino intakes and exhaust. The intakes include resin wheels if I remember correctly and they correct the odd shape of the kit. The exhaust are nice too. Don't buy Aires set as they are way too small. I would also recommend Sierra Hotel intakes but they appear to be sold out at the moment. Jake Melampy with Reid Air publications has some books that would be great for your project. There are a lot of little but noticeable differences between the earlier and later jets that Jake's books can help you with. I can't recommend these enough. There is some other aftermarket things you can get but these are kind of the must haves. You could do without the G-Factor landing gear but you have to be careful with the way you glue them together or they will sag over time. The Hornet is kinda in my wheel house so let me know if you have questions, I'd be happy to help. Bryan
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